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Mallards Look to Keep Pace with Streaking Woodchucks

by Peter Geppert

Madison, WI – July 19, 2012. The Madison Mallards (9-4, 25-23) will look to earn a split of their two game series with the Wisconsin Woodchucks (12-1, 29-19) tonight at the “Duck Pond”. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 pm.

On Wednesday the Woodchucks won the opener of the series on a rain-shortened contest that only saw 4 ½ innings played. RBI singles from left fielder Brad McKewon (Creighton) and center fielder Eric Filia-Snyder (UCLA) proved to be all the offense the Woodchucks would need to walk away with a 2-0 victory.

With the win the Woodchucks extended their season long win streak to seven and moved into a three game lead over the Mallards for first place in the South Division.  

The Mallards will feature right-hander Matt LaMothe (Georgia State) on the mound this evening. LaMothe (3-3) is coming off a start in which he gave up four runs on eight hits through 5.0 innings of work in the Mallards 10-8 loss to the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters (5-9, 21-27) on July 13th. Despite taking the loss in his previous outing, LaMothe has been one of the aces of the Mallards pitching staff this season. Through eight starts, the right-hander has been impressive on the mound. His 54 strikeouts are second in the Northwoods League.

Taking the ball for his sixth start with the Woodchucks is right-hander Brendon Hayden (Virginia Tech). In his last outing Hayden (1-0) went 4.0 innings, giving up three runs on seven hits in an 8-7 loss to the La Crosse Loggers (6-7, 32-16). Although he is coming into tonight with a solid 3.86 ERA, Hayden’s numbers have not suggested that he has particularly elusive stuff on the mound. So far this season he is sporting a pedestrian 1.86 WHIP and 12 strikeouts compared to 13 walks.

Home Bats:

On offense the Mallards have been a completely different team on the road. This season the Mallards are hitting an impressive .305 at the “Duck Pond”, compared to an ice-cold .177 when away. 

All-Around Performer:

The Mallards will be going up against a pitcher in Hayden who has been all over the field for the Woodchucks this season. Not only has the Twin Lakes native been solid as a backend of the rotation starter, but he has also been a catalyst for the Woodchucks on offense. As a player Hayden is third on the team with a .326 average and leads the team with 30 RBIs.

Up Next:

After tonight’s game the Mallards hit the road for a three game weekend series with the Battle Creek Bombers (5-8, 19-29), before taking three days off for the all-star break.

The Mallards return to action at the “Duck Pond” on Friday, July 27th against the Rafters. That night will be Presidential Bobble Election Night at the ballpark. 

The 2012 season is upon us! Single-game tickets are on-sale for all Mallards home games!

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The Madison Mallards are part of the 16-team Northwoods League.  The Northwoods League has more teams, plays more games, and draws more fans than any other Summer Collegiate League in North America.

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